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Police Report: Bias-Related Graffiti and Hate Speech Discovered in High School Restroom

shssealOn Sept. 26, bias-related graffiti was found on a restroom stall door in a boy’s restroom on the forth floor of Scarsdale High School. It consisted of a swastika and offensive hate speech targeting different groups of people. Immediately, school officials reported it to police. The incident is being handled as a felony – a bias-related hate crime and fourth-degree criminal mischief – and police are actively investigating the matter.

This is what we know so far: Three students discovered the graffiti in the afternoon and reported it. According to a statement issued by the school, “The words and images were not easily visible, though upon closer scrutiny they became apparent.” Police said it difficult to determine exactly when the graffiti appeared or if it was made in sections over time, possibly using or modifying old graffiti markings that had been sanded-over and painted-over to create a new offensive message.
The incident follows the discovery of similar offensive graffiti discovered in another high school restroom approximately two weeks ago.

Later that same day, Principal Kenneth Bonamo issued the following in an email to parents and students: “We have asked our custodial staff to remove the graffiti and to continue to inspect bathrooms for graffiti during their nightly work. This work may take some time, and the responsibility to keep all areas of our school free of graffiti falls to each of us in not creating it in the first place and in reporting it if it’s seen to a school administrator or counselor. I wish to commend the three students who came forward today.” Deans and youth outreach workers were made available to talk with any students or families seeking conversation on the matter.

Police routinely patrol all schools and houses of worship. However, to address the seriousness of this incident, police noted there will an increased police presence around all Scarsdale schools and houses of worship. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call Scarsdale police at 914-722-1200.

Arrests on warrant
On Sept. 23, Peter Pennyfeather, 31, of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, surrendered himself to police on an active warrant issued out of Scarsdale for failure to appear in court to resolve vehicle and traffic charges. Pennyfeather was released on his own recognizance and issued an appearance ticket for Scarsdale Village Justice Court.

On Sept. 25, Greenburgh police reported they were holding Jessica G. Vallejos, 47, of White Plains, at their headquarters because there was an active arrest warrant previously issued out of Scarsdale for failure to appear in court to resolve vehicle and traffic charges. She told police there was a language barrier, and she did not realize she was supposed to appear in court. Vallejos was released on his own recognizance and issued an appearance ticket for Scarsdale Village Justice Court.

Attempted burglary
An alarm sounded at a Broadmoor Road house, indicating an attempted burglary Sept. 24. Police arrived at the house and noticed a broken side window. The house was not entered. Police are investigating.

A White Birch Lane woman reported three fraudulent transactions on her bank account totaling $2,000 Sept. 23. They appeared on her account after she responded to an unsecure fake email and entered financial information while attempting to book tickets. Her credit card company was informed and reversed the charges.

A Tunstall Road resident reported her outdoor side lights went on at 9 p.m., Sept. 25, but she thought it was because of an animal. In the morning, she noticed her deck furniture had been rearranged and one of her doorbell cameras had been disconnected and was not charged. Nothing was damaged or missing. Police scheduled extra ridebys of her house as a precaution.

A Stonehouse Road resident reported a white man in his 40s came to her door and rang the doorbell Sept. 26. He allegedly became irate when the homeowner would not answer the door. He was said to have lingered on the doorstep before leaving the property.

Civil matter
On Sept. 23, a Foxhall Road woman reported she had hired movers to help her with a move, but they showed up to her house unprepared. She asked the movers to leave and said she no longer wanted them to do the job. At that point, the movers were begging her to let them start the job. She called police when the movers hesitated to leave. The movers left before patrol arrived.

Cars and roadways
Police stood by a motorist with a disabled car and directed traffic around it, while the motorist waited for a tow, Sept. 23.

The driver of a BMW parked at Garth and Popham roads was sleeping at midnight, Sept. 25. He said he had worked all day and was feeling well. A family member came to pick him up. He refused medical attention.

Patrol removed a branch from Fenimore Road Sept. 24.

A car was left running in Freightway Garage Sept. 24. Police contacted the owner, who returned to the car and turned off the ignition.

A bus was standing in a no standing zone on Post Road, blocking sight lines for other motorists Sept. 256. Police asked the driver to move the bus, and he complied with instructions.
Police helped a pedestrian walk on Weaver Street in an area where there is no sidewalk Sept. 25.

Police called a tow for an overheating car at Greenacres and Walworth avenues Sept. 25.

Police stood by while a motorist changed a flat tire on Walworth Avenue Sept. 25.

Police noticed a car with an open door parked in a Gatehouse Road driveway at 1 a.m., Sept. 26. The car did not appear tossed. Police closed the door.

Police contacted the driver of a car parked partially across a Carthage Road driveway and asked the driver to move the car Sept. 27. The driver complied.

A man could not exit a parking space on Brewster Road because another driver parked too close to him Sept. 27. Police contacted the high school, where an announcement was made for the driver to move his car. Police stood by while the car was moved and issued the driver a summons.

The highway department removed a fallen tree from Palmer Avenue Sept. 29.

Five car accidents were reported in the Village this week.

A Barry Road man reported a skunk had been struck by a car and was injured and hiding under her bushes Sept. 25. The skunk’s location made it unsafe for police to check it, although it appeared to not be moving. Police provided the man with contact information for local animal trappers. The man said he would probably wait to see if the skunk would die there and then remove it himself. Later that day, another Barry Road homeowner reported an injured skunk walking on her yard. Police provided her with animal trappers’ contact information. The animal was most likely the same skunk reported in the first call. An hour later, the skunk was reported dead. Police disposed of it and notified sanitation workers for pickup.

Police picked up a loose, large, light brown Cockapoo at Post Road and Boulevard Sept. 25. While waiting for New Rochelle Humane Society to pick up the dog, a woman called to report her lost dog. Police reunited the dog with its family and issued the owner a summons for having a dog at large.

Police reunited a loose French bulldog and its owner after the dog was found loose on Post Road Sept. 28.

Village code
Police issued landscapers summonses for using gas-powered leaf blowers in violation of village code on Secor Road Sept. 24, Circle Road Sept. 26 and Rock Creek Lane Sept. 27.
After neighbors complained of noise, police asked a Richbell Road homeowner to lower the volume of music Sept. 27.

Lost and found
A Walworth Avenue caller reported she lost her phone while walking a neighbor’s dog Sept. 24.

A Paddington Road resident reported losing her passport from Thailand somewhere between CVS on Popham Road and her house during a walk Sept. 26.

According to Fire Chief James Seymour, firefighters responded to 27 incidents during the reporting period. He shared details of the following incidents.

On Sept. 23, firefighters responded to a reported gas leak in a Fayette Road house.

Con Edison was notified and detected a leak inside the boiler. The boiler was red tagged.

On Sept. 23, firefighters assisted with evacuation and helped extinguish a cooking fire confined to a container in a Central Avenue apartment.

Firefighter assisted with a car accident with injuries on the Hutchinson River Parkway Sept. 23.

On Sept. 26, firefighters were alerted to a problem on Highland Way by an automatic fire alarm. Upon arrival, firefighters smelled an odor of a pot being left on the stove through the mail slot. They made entry and removed the pot from stovetop. The homeowner was home but did not hear firefighters ringing the doorbell. The house was ventilated with a portable fan.

This report covering police and fire department activity from Sept. 23-29 has been compiled from official information.

scarsdalesecuritylogo 1 1This police report is sponsored by Scarsdale Security who does more than just security. Contact them about remote video for your home or business. Call 914-722-2200 or visit their website.

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